Links to the past

Cedric Burnside and Lightnin' Malcolm are almost unbelievably devoted to the blues

Burnside's stated mission is to promote R.L.'s legacy and maintain the relevance of the blues. "I don't think anybody could live up to his legacy, but I just really want to keep it going, get some of me and Malcolm's music out there and keep my granddad's music alive," he says. "I know there's not a lot of people doing the style of music that we doing today, writing our own music. It's all hill country, and [we] got it all from my granddad."

With recent books like Marybeth Hamilton's In Search of the Blues questioning traditionally accepted histories of the Delta blues, it's a pleasure to connect with such talented, committed crusaders for the genre. Ignoring one's skepticism is quite easy when it comes to this pair of living, breathing anachronisms.

Juke Joint Duo's Cedric Burnside and Lightnin' Malcolm, champions of the blues
Colin McAuliffe
Juke Joint Duo's Cedric Burnside and Lightnin' Malcolm, champions of the blues

CEDRIC BURNSIDE and LIGHTNIN' MALCOLM play the DEEP BLUES FESTIVAL with Richard Johnston, Black-Eyed Snakes, and many more on FRIDAY, JULY 18, at the WASHINGTON COUNTRY FAIRGROUNDS; www.deepbluesfestival.com

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